Hi friends! I have big exciting news. Well, perhaps it is only big and exciting in my world, but I’m going to share it with you, and I hope you think it’s exciting too!
But first, I want to talk about my awesome speed sesh with Ashley this morning! I am trying to be a legit runner, and stick to my training plan, which means today was my first official training speed session. I mean, I definitely made up some of my own in the past with no idea what I was doing or why I was choosing certain distances, just in the hopes of getting faster. They were killer and I think they worked pretty well, but there is something about seeing it on the plan and the determination to reach that goal that really excites me!
All 3 of my previous speed work outs (maybe there were only 2? who knows…) were done at 800 meter intervals. This training plan uses exclusively 1600s (1 mile). I have a small confession. In the past, if I didn’t feel like I could make it, I wouldn’t just slow down like an honest non cheating runner, I would stop, pause my garmin, catch my breath for a second (or 10), then be on my merry way. It was easy to let myself give up, and I felt like I was cheating…and honestly, I kinda was. I am determined for no more cheating!
Today the plan called for 4 miles including a 1 mile warm up, 2x1600s @ 8:45 with an 800 recovery jog in between, and a cool down. The first interval was challenging, but I knew the entire time that I could do it. I never felt like I was going to die or anything, which I take as a good sign. I finished the first 1600 in 8:42. Not bad, self. Not bad at all. Towards the end of our recovery jog, Ashley asked if I needed to stop before the next interval and I proudly denied the possibility of stopping and said my 800 of jogging should be plenty of rest, and if I have to slow down, and I don’t meet my goal, that is my problem, but I’m not allowed to stop. See friends, I have turned over a new leaf!
The second interval was challenging, but I never felt like I needed to stop. It just felt hard, but running is supposed to be hard, and that’s why I like it! I finished the second interval in 8:37, and after the cool down, I completed 4 miles in 38:24. Not too shabby. The whole run felt challenging, but great! Tomorrow is a rest day, and then Friday it says 8 miles at a snail’s pace. Or at least, it might as well. After the run, I got lots of twitchy needling done. Today was a little rough. The more your muscles twitch and grab onto the needle, the more painful it is, and today Gabe got all excited talking about how I was “getting so many good twitches” while I was fighting the urge to yell obscenities because the pain was a little ridiculous. But you know what? If it works as well as it did last week, NEEDLE AWAY GABE!!!!! For real.
Okay, so that news….
Drum roll please………..
Excuse me, but I don’t believe you actually made a drum roll sound, can you please play along?
I’m sorry, I’m 5.
*** I SIGNED UP FOR A FULL MARATHON!! ***
That’s it? We had to drum roll for that? I’m never reading this blog again!
It’s okay friends, I’m not very observant, so even if you only pretend to be excited, I will never know the difference
But wait…there’s more! It’s not just any marathon. Let me explain. While Kara and I were training for PF Chang’s, I started musing about the day I would complete a full marathon. I remember saying to her that when we did our first full, we should go somewhere special, and make a big celebratory vacation out of it! Well I was training for my first half, while lots of awesome running bloggers were training for and running the New York City Marathon. I remember thinking “How amazing!!! I want to do that!!” I declared to Kara that this would be our marathon. Well, remember that I am a new runner, and I didn’t know about the lottery system or anything like that. Once I discovered that not just anyone could sign up,
I cried because my dreams were crushed, I moved on to other options. I had all, but decided on San Diego, when I heard terrible things about the race, and resigned myself to the fact that PF Chang’s in Phoenix next January would be my race. Which, don’t get me wrong, would still be awesome, but I remember so clearly dreaming about New York.
Well, Monday I went to get my hurrrr did (yes, that is how I say it), and Allison mentioned that Chances for Children had spots open for NYC. I couldn’t even believe it.
“Chances for Children is committed to improving quality of life by supporting programs that provide access to sports, physical education, and character education for youth. We provide fitness training, nutritional programs and educational services to students at schools throughout Arizona. Chances for Children was founded on the belief that in life everyone deserves the chance for opportunity. Research shows that diet and exercise promote a balanced well-being, resulting in positive life achievements.”
The opportunity to raise money for a foundation that provides health and fitness opportunities for kids?!?! And the opportunity to run the NYC Marathon?!?!?! It kind of seemed like fate. Within 24 hours, I filled out a form and secured my spot. Lots more to come about the foundation, my plans for how to raise the money (it’s a $5,000 commitment that I hope to not just meet, but exceed), and my training.
Being a part of this program, I get a personalized training plan as well as coaching which is absolutely amazing. I also am thrilled about the idea of working with a team, being a part of something bigger, and running for more than myself. I get to run to help all of those kids struggling with health and self esteem like I did when I was their age. I have the opportunity to open doors for these kids, and possibly help them from struggling with weight, health and self esteem until their mid 20′s like I did. I could help someone like me, and make their life better. And isn’t that what it’s all about? As someone who works with kids every day, and knows all too well the challenges of being an overweight child, I cannot think of a more relevant organization to accomplish this life long dream with. I haven’t been this excited about something in a very long time, and I can’t wait to share this journey with all of you!